Macs Music Services
Touch Weight Analysis & Correction
Touch weight is a complicated subject that deals with how a piano feels when played at various speeds and dynamic levels. Some pianos feel fast and lightweight, while others may feel heavy and sluggish.
The subject of touch weight deals with several laws of physics: friction, static motion, and inertia. Pianos are affected by all three of these physical properties and each of them must be carefully analyzed and addressed as part of a thorough Touchweight correction project.
Determining if a Piano has Touch weight Problems
Before beginning any Touchweight analysis and correction job, I like to talk directly to the pianist(s) about their concerns regarding the problems and expectations they have about the piano. This gives me some great insight not only into the piano itself but also into what the player expects from it and where it is falling short. Sometimes, the problem may have something to do with the player as well as the piano itself. So, it’s important to bring this out at the beginning.
I also like to play the instrument myself, as a way of learning about the subtle nuances of its current touch parameters. Does it respond to different dynamic ranges? Can I control pianissimo passages easily? Do the keys feel light or heavy or somewhere in between? Does it repeat quickly? Does the touch feel even from note to note? Do my hands and arms tire easily from playing it? These are some of the things I look for when assessing the touch of a piano.
Oftentimes, when a piano has a less-than-stellar touch all that may be needed is good regulation & voicing. Sometimes the issues may be more dramatic such as hammers that are severely worn or action parts that need to be replaced. In this case, the action may need rebuilding and we may discuss the various types of hammers and their qualities along with the type of sound the player may hope to get from the piano to determine what choice will best fit each individual player & instrument. Considerably more customization is possible than most pianists can imagine.